On May 20, 2024, Gala Games, a leading blockchain gaming project, faced a major security breach. An unknown attacker exploited the platform, minting 5 billion GALA tokens worth about $214 million at the time. This event went on to shock the cryptocurrency as well as blockchain gaming communities, revealing the vulnerabilities in decentralized systems.

Looking Back at the Exploit

Solidity developer 0xquit reported that the attacker used an admin address to mint the tokens. This indicates that the exploit could have been the work of an external hacker or someone with internal access. The attacker had the potential to mint up to 12 billion more tokens. However, their actions were halted when the compromised address was blacklisted. To continue, the attacker would need access to another admin address.

A compromised or rogue Gala Games admin address minted 5 Billion $GALA ($200M) and has been systematically selling the tokens for the past 2 hours.

This is why decentralization is important – I prefer “can’t be evil” over “don’t be evil”, and design with that in mind.

Outlaw… pic.twitter.com/aZkQZ2zYi6

— Quit (@0xQuit) May 20, 2024

In reaction to the breach, the Gala Games team quickly blacklisted the hacker’s address, stopping them from selling more tokens. This swift action was vital in limiting further damage. Gala Games issued a public statement reaffirming their commitment to security and transparency. They also assured users that they are working with law enforcement to track down the attacker. Eric Schiermeyer, the CEO of Gala Games, expressed angst over the incident and acknowledged the failure in internal controls. He said,

We messed up our internal controls…This shouldn’t have happened and we are taking steps to ensure it doesn’t ever again. We believe we have identified the culprit and we are currently working with the FBI, DOJ, and a network of international authorities. There is the issue of our daily distribution…we will be having a node vote on how to handle this issue. As usual, the community will decide how we proceed.

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Market Impact

The breach had an immediate and drastic effect on the price of GALA tokens. Following the exploit, the asset’s price dipped to $0.039 which was a 19% decrease from its daily high. But, at press time, the price seemed more stable as GALA was trading at $0.04208 with a 5.13% daily drop.


Moving forward, Gala Games is taking extensive measures to address the breach and prevent future indicates. The firm noted,

“This was an isolated incident, the cause of which has been addressed. We will provide updates as the investigation continues and take all necessary steps to prevent future incidents.”

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